Originally Posted by MathGeek
If I had one rod for pier fishing on a budget, I'd get an 8 ft ugly stick medium heavy spinning rod, the Catfish model is reasonably priced and about right. I'd add a Shakespeare Platinum Spinning reel, a size 50 if you're targeting kings or cobia, otherwise smaller. Opinions vary on line, but I'd go with 30 lb power pro even on a smaller size reel, you never know if you'll be fighting a big redfish or drum or if a cobia will pick up your crab or hardhead.
I like egg sinkers, usually a few 1/2 and 1 oz will do. Some size 1 or 2 hooks to hold live shrimp, some 5/0 to 7/0 for crab, some 1/0 for cut mullet or dead shrimp. Some big treble hooks and steel leaders for kings if you want to go after them. I spend money on fluorocarbon leader material, because I've seen it make a big difference. On a budget, you might get one 100 yard spool of regular 20-40 lb fluorocarbon fishing line which will be nearly invisible to the fish and work nearly as well as dedicated leader material for the less toothy species.
Don't worry about the pier regulars who might sneer at your multi-purpose rod. By the time you're ready to upgrade, you'll have a good idea what you need, and the rig I've descibed will be good enough for everything from sheephead to pompano to kings in the meantime.
Good info there, thats for sure. I am going to go down to one of the piers and see what some of they are using down there, but I am sure most of them are pretty well outfitted for most anything. I dont care if they sneer at me for my cheap set up, I just want to catch some fish... LOL Looking at the pictures on here of the fish they are catching on the piers has really gotten me back into the fishing mood... I just have to get a basic set up to catch what is here. Its a bit different from what we would use back up north on the rivers.....